HP announces Windows 8 hybrid tablet, ultrabooks

Hewlett-Packard Co. announced its first several products based on Windows 8 today, showcasing a new multi-touch tablet hybrid and two new notebooks also with touchscreens.

As the general availability of Windows 8 in October draws near, Microsoft Corp.’s next operating system will first be seen by the world on new products being marketed by PC makers. The release to manufacturers (RTM) was shipped Aug. 15 by Microsoft and the first devices supporting it are being demonstrated to media already.

HP’s first trio of Windows 8 products.

The first trio of products from HP includes its first consumer tablet since it mothballed the TouchPad, based on webOS. The Envy X2 is a hybrid PC – the screen detaches from an aluminum base to become an 11.6-inch tablet. Dock it with the magnetic hinge, and it turns into a notebook with an extra battery for prolonged use. It will be available in Canada Dec. 9 at a starting cost of $849.99.

But the first Windows 8 product on the market from HP will be the Envy 4 TouchSmart Ultrabook. This will see a 14-inch touchscreen put on a more traditional notebook form factor. Its 23 mm at its thickest point when closed, and weights 4.77 pounds. Models will be powered by Intel’s multi-core processors and an optional AMD graphics card with 2 GB of memory. Canadians will see this on the market Oct. 26 for a starting price of $999.

That will be followed by another ultrabook in January. The Spectre TouchSmart will have a 15.6-inch display with edge-to-edge glass and an all-metal design. It will feature Intel’s Thunderbolt port, as well as USB 3.0. It will retail at a price starting at $1,499 in Canada.

The Windows 8 PC products from HP come almost exactly one year after the firm announced it would keep its PC division. After evaluating whether it would be best to sell off the Personal Systems Group, HP CEO Meg Whitman said HP was still committed to the dvision.

Brian JacksonBrian Jackson is the Editor at ITBusiness.ca. E-mail him at bjackson@itbusiness.ca, follow him on Twitter, connect on , read his blog, and check out the IT Business Facebook Page.
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